An Anthropologist looks at YouTube

In the midst of change and emerging communities it is easy to miss the macroshifts. As a participant in a culture or community we simply are often blind the the overall effect of the community therefore it is absolutely essential that thinkers and researchers examine these communities and shifts so that they can remind us of how truly amazing our world can be. Consider YouTube, the land of skateboarding dogs and lonelygirl15 drama. It is easy to discount the importance of a technology OR more appropriately how we as humans incorporate the technology into our lifestyles but once you consider the effect of YouTube’s ubiquitous video for the masses it teaches you a whole new respect for what we are doing collectively.

Last night I discovered the amazing work of Dr. Michael Wesch, Anthropologist at Kansas State University. It would do him a great injustice for me to summarize his work so I shall simply point you to the only video on YouTube over 5 minutes that I’ve ever watched in full.

An anthropological introduction to YouTube by Dr. Michael Wesch, professor of Digital Ethnography.

The video is a 55 minute presentation of a speech he gave at the Library of Congress. His work and perspectives are absolutely amazing.

He has several videos to his credit. His first and most famous is also a must see. The Machine is Us/ing Us

Both of these are well worth your time. Take a moment and look at the macroshift that we are all apart of.

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